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Maritime Houseflags S (Australia)

Last modified: 2016-03-13 by ian macdonald
Keywords: shipping: australia | howard smith | state shipping western australia | sydney ferries | state transit | tasmanian steamers | cross (red) | swan (black) | crown | wreath: laurel | stars: 8-pointed (white) | saltire (red | f |
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Scottish Ship Management (Australia) Pty. Ltd.

[Scottish Ship Management (Australia) Pty. Ltd. houseflag and funnel] image by Neale Rosanoski, 10 March 2010

Scottish Ship Management (Australia) Pty. Ltd. The flag resembled that of the defunct Scottish Ship Management Ltd. of the UK, though there is no known connection, being blue with a white triangle issuant from hoist bearing the red letters "SSMA" taken from The Log of 5/1992. This particular company changed its name and no longer exists according to government records.
Neale Rosanoski, 10 March 2010


Seafreight Pty. Ltd.

[Seafreight Pty. Ltd. houseflag and funnel] image by Neale Rosanoski, 10 March 2010

Seafreight Pty. Ltd. Based in Lae, Papua New Guinea but under the agency of Stannard Bros. Launch Services Pty. Ltd. of Sydney, it operated from the early 1970s to the mid 1980s with The Log 2/1988 showing a diagonal biband flag from lower hoist to upper fly of black and red with overall a yellow seahorse. In tropical conditions the black was inclined to fade to a navy blue.
Neale Rosanoski, 10 March 2010


Sims Consolidated Ltd.

[Sims Consolidated Ltd. houseflag and funnel] [Sims Consolidated Ltd. houseflag and funnel] image by Neale Rosanoski, 10 March 2010

Sims Consolidated Ltd. With original going back to 1917 this Sydney metal company entered shipping in 1959 through a Hong Kong subsidiary and then when it folded in 1963 continued as a charterer using a white flag with a green map of Australia bearing a stylized yellow "S" which was later replaced by a blue map with an orange "S" (The Log 5/1987). I am not sure how long their shipping involvement but there was a change of ownership in 1979, followed by other changes over the years with the company still existing as part of the international metal recycling Sims Group Ltd.
Neale Rosanoski, 10 March 2010


H.C. Sleigh Ltd.

[H.C. Sleigh Ltd. houseflag and funnel] image by Neale Rosanoski, 10 March 2010

H.C. Sleigh Ltd. Based Melbourne with origins dating back to 1895 and was also involved in the petroleum industry where it became associated with Caltex. Its shipping interests faded by around 1980 but it had used a white flag with a blue star and initially traded between Melbourne and Western Australia as the Blue Star Line. Sources US Navy 1961 and The Log 2/1986.
Neale Rosanoski, 10 March 2010


Howard Smith Ltd.

[Howard Smith Ltd flag] by Jarig Bakker, 20 Feb 2005

Howard Smith Ltd., Melbourne - red flag, black diamond, white "S".
Source: Brown's Flags and Funnels of British and Foreign Steamship Companies [wed26].
Jarig Bakker, 20 Feb 2005

Between 1913 and 1964 the shipping arm of Howard Smith Ltd. was Australian Steamships Pty. Ltd. and some sources show the flag under that name. It was then changed to Howard Smith Industries Pty. Ltd.
Neale Rosanoski, 16 August 2005


L.W. Smith Pty. Ltd.

[L.W. Smith Pty. Ltd. houseflag and funnel] image by Neale Rosanoski, 10 March 2010

L.W. Smith Pty. Ltd. The firm based in Launceston which became the largest wool scourers in the Southern Hemisphere planned to build a ship but were interrupted by WW2 and the "Merino" was not delivered until 1949 and was then used only briefly in the wool trade before being switched to the general cargo trade and then after 1963 it was chartered out until sold in 1969. The Log of 2/1991 gives their flag as diagonal quarters of black and red with a white circle within a yellow rope tied with a reef knot and bearing what appears to have been the red lion of Tasmania.
Neale Rosanoski, 10 March 2010


Southern Cross Shipping Pty. Ltd.

[Southern Cross Shipping Pty. Ltd.  houseflag and funnel] image by Neale Rosanoski, 11 March 2010

Southern Cross Shipping Pty. Ltd. Given by Loughran 1979 as domiciled Sydney, but by The Log 2/1988 as Port Moresby and chartering a vessel in the late 1960s and having a flag divided vertically red and blue but with the dividing line being an angled point to the hoist, the red bearing the white letters "SCS" in vertical line and the blue the Southern Cross constellation of 5 white stars. Loughran 1979 also shows the flag but has his stars all the same size.
Neale Rosanoski, 11 March 2010


Southern Ocean Trawlers Pty. Ltd.

[Southern Ocean Trawlers Pty. Ltd. houseflag and funnel] image by Neale Rosanoski, 11 March 2010

Southern Ocean Trawlers Pty. Ltd. Operated by a joint venture of Southern Ocean Fish Processors Pty. Ltd. of Albany, Australia and the British company British United Trawlers Ltd. using 3 trawlers between 1977 and 1979, there may have been a flag in that one is shown on the funnel by The Log 8/1988 being white with the black letters "S.O.T." arranged diagonally from Upper hoist to lower fly though as the source does not mention its existence this is only speculation.
Neale Rosanoski, 11 March 2010


Southern Shipping Lines Pty. Ltd.

[Southern Shipping Lines Pty. Ltd. houseflag and funnel] image by Neale Rosanoski, 11 March 2010

Southern Shipping Lines Pty. Ltd. Operated by William Charlick Ltd. as charterers from 1965 out of Adelaide for around 20 years with a blue flag having a white border and bearing a white cross paty from The Log 5/1987.
Neale Rosanoski, 11 March 2010


South Sea Lines

[South Sea Lines houseflag and funnel] image by Neale Rosanoski, 10 March 2010

South Sea Lines. A subsidiary of William Charlick Ltd. of Australia which was itself domiciled in Rabaul, Papua New Guinea and operated the Charlick owned ships from the early 1970s to the early 1980s. The Log of 2/1988 shows a blue flag with a stylized "C" which was unlike the actual Charlick funnel design, they apparently not having had a flag for earlier operations in their own name. Charlick itself was taken over in 1969 and liquidated in 1993.
Neale Rosanoski, 10 March 2010


Spencer's Gulf Steamship Co. Ltd.

[Spenser's Gulf Steamship Co. Ltd. houseflag and funnel] image by Neale Rosanoski, 10 March 2010

Spenser's Gulf Steamship Co. Ltd. Based Adelaide it was formed in 1876 being taken over 1882 by the Adelaide Steamship Co. Ltd. From The Log of 8/1994 the flag was white with a blue saltire bearing 5 red stars.
Neale Rosanoski, 10 March 2010


State Shipping, Western Australia

[State Shipping, Western Australia] by Jarig Bakker, 30 Aug 2004

From the link provided by Barbara Tomlinson of The National Maritime Museum http://collections.rmg.co.uk/collections.html/:

The house flag of State Shipping, West Australia. A rectangular white flag with a red cross. In the centre, there is a yellow disc with a black swan within a laurel wreath and a crown above it. The flag is made of a wool and synthetic fibre bunting. It has a cotton hoist and is machine sewn with the design printed. A rope is attached.
Jarig Bakker, 30 Aug 2004

Sullivan's Cove Ferry Co.

[Sullivan's Cove Ferry Co. houseflag and funnel] image by Neale Rosanoski, 11 March 2010

Sullivan's Cove Ferry Co. A Hobart boat building company formed in 1972 which also operated small ferries across the Derwent River after the bridge was damaged by the "Lake Illawarra" in 1975. These were named after notorious Tasmanian bushrangers with the black emblem being the convict "broad arrow" and being placed on a white flag between two red bands which are narrower than the resulting white bands of field. The ferry service only lasted for a couple of years with the vessels subsequently sold whilst the company became part of what is now the Incat group of shipbuilders which evolved in 1978.
Neale Rosanoski, 11 March 2010


Swan River Shipping Co. Ltd.

[Swan River Shipping Co. Ltd. houseflag and funnel] image by Neale Rosanoski, 10 March 2010

The Swan River Shipping Co. Ltd. was formed in 1894 and despite its somewhat grand title was mainly involved throughout its existence in operating the tug "Wyola". By The Log 8/1994 it originally had a blue flag with a white saltire surmounted by a yellow circle, edged red and bearing a black swan swimming to hoist on a black line of water. Apparently the flag passed into history, possibly following the takeover in 1968 by Howard Smith Ltd. The company itself continued to operate until around the mid 1980s and although still in name existence is in the process of a voluntary winding up.
Neale Rosanoski, 10 March 2010


Sydney Ferries

[Sydney Ferries houseflag] by Jonathan Dixon

The flag is flown from Sydney Ferries (at the other end to the Australian Red Ensign) and an email from the Sydney Ferries website says that it is the flag of the State Transit Authority.
Jonathan Dixon, 23 September 1999

A similar flag appeared being flown by a cruise liner on Sydney Harbour on a BBC television programme. On each side of the saltire in the canton was a device which was impossible to make out on the tv.
André Coutanche, 14 Sep 2000

It is like a white ensign but the canton contain a red saltire with a white border on a blue field and the white letters "S" at 9 o'clock and "F" at 3 o'clock. The red st-george cross is defaced with four 8 pointed white stars.
Marc Pasquin, 24 Nov 2001

If the flag is an STA flag, rather than a Sydney Ferries flag, why the "S" and "F"? Sydney Ferries and Sydney Buses, as part of the STA, are referred to as Sydney Buses and Ferries as often as they are separately. I also would have thought the flag would predate the use of the name "Sydney Ferries", although it is an assumption on my part to say that the name is more recent than STA-run ferries.
Jonathan Dixon, 24 Nov 2001

Sydney Ferries originated 1900 as Sydney Ferries Ltd. with a blue flag having a white saltire and the red letters "S" and "F" in hoist and fly respectively:

[Sydney Ferries flag, 1933] by Neale Rosanoski, 22 Feb 2004

In 1951 the New South Wales Government took over the Sydney ferry services and operated as Sydney Harbour Ferries Pty. Ltd., now with a blue flag and red saltire with the white letters "S"(chief), "H" (hoist) and "F"(fly):

[Sydney Harbour Ferries flag, 1951] by Neale Rosanoski, 22 Feb 2004

In December 1974 the company was reorganized as the New South Wales Public Transport Commission adopting the following year a blue flag with an emblem of 2 half arrows, white over light blue, pointing to hoist and fly respectively (shades of blue uncertain except one dark, the other light):

[New South Wales Public Transport Commission flag 1975] by Neale Rosanoski, 22 Feb 2004

Then in 1983 it became the Urban Transport Commission but the flag was not changed until 1991 to the version shown except stars are given (source The Log 5/1991) as yellow with the flag being based on the badge of New South Wales, which has yellow stars, less the lion, whilst the canton incorporates facets of the flags of the first two companies. In 1995 there was another name change to State Transit - Sydney Ferries which is still in use. There are variances in dates and exact names from sources with "Sydney" for example replacing "New South Wales" but between Lloyds and the Australian maritime publication The Log this summary should be fairly accurate. If the stars are white now then a change appears to have been made.
Neale Rosanoski, 22 Feb 2004

Since July 2004, Sydney Ferries has been a separate corporation. I do not see any need for the flag to have changed, as it already specifically represented the Ferries.

The issue of the flags on the ferries came up on the Letters page of the Sydney Morning Herald last week, when a correspondent complained that the flags were quite tattered. Yesterday, the following response appeared:

Ferry standards raised
I refer to the letter from Don Easter (November 15) regarding the flags on Sydney Ferries Corporation's Freshwater class vessels. I am pleased to advise that new red ensigns, the standard marine flag for Australian vessels, and new Sydney Ferries Corporation flags were hoisted on all Freshwater class Manly ferries last week. These flags are now flying with pride on our iconic vessels.
Sue Sinclair chief executive officer, Sydney Ferries Corporation, Sydney
Jonathan Dixon, 22 November 2005
 
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